Andrew Somerville

Andrew Somerville
Iowa State University | ISU · Department of World Languages & Cultures

PhD

About

26
Publications
5,983
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Citations
Introduction
I am an Assistant Professor of Anthropology in the Department of World Languages and Cultures at Iowa State University. My research focuses on the food and foodways of the pre-Hispanic Americas, using dietary reconstruction as a lens by which to examine social organization and human-environmental relationships.
Additional affiliations
August 2016 - May 2017
California State University, Dominguez Hills
Position
  • Adjunct lecturer
September 2015 - June 2016
University of California, San Diego
Position
  • Lecturer
Education
September 2007 - September 2015
University of California, San Diego
Field of study
  • Anthropology
January 2001 - May 2006
Arizona State University
Field of study
  • Anthropology

Publications

Publications (26)
Article
Full-text available
Human-animal interactions have played crucial roles in the development of complex societies across the globe. This study examines the human-leporid (cottontail and jackrabbit) relationship at the pre-Hispanic (AD 1–550) city of Teotihuacan in the Basin of Mexico and tests the hypothesis that leporids were managed or bred for food and secondary prod...
Article
Palaeoclimatological and palaeoenvironmental reconstructions based on stable isotope analysis of mammalian bone require an understanding of the behavior and physiology of the organism and mandate taxon-specific considerations. This study assesses the utility of using bone tissue of leporids (cottontail rabbits, Sylvilagus sp., and hares, Lepus sp.)...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeological studies at Coxcatlan Cave in the Tehuacan Valley of southern Puebla, Mexico, have been instrumental to the development of the chronology for the region and for our understanding of the origins of food production in the Americas. This article refines the Preceramic chronology of the Tehuacan Valley by presenting 14 new accelerated mas...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding how maritime hunter-gatherer diets changed through time in response to increasing social complexity can help us understand important transitions in early human history. This paper presents new baseline stable isotope values for southern California with an emphasis on marine plant and animal species. We use our baseline database to ree...
Preprint
Full-text available
This study provides evidence of the value of using isotopic data from faunal remains to understand human diet and mobility patterns when human remains are not available for examination. In this research, bone apatite, bone collagen, and enamel apatite from fauna recovered from recent excavations of the Dixon site (13WD8), an Oneota complex site (AD...
Article
Full-text available
This article presents baseline isotope values for plant and animal samples collected from across southern California. A total of 80 samples representing 50 species were collected and analyzed for this project. This original dataset includes 31 plant species, 13 finfish species, 3 mollusk species, 2 crustacean species, and 1 echinoderm. Plant sample...
Preprint
The pre-Hispanic settlement of Paquime (1150/1200–1450 CE) in northwestern Chihuahua exhibits extensive evidence of exchange connections with distant communities, including the remains of over 300 scarlet macaws (Ara macao), brilliantly plumed birds whose geographic origins lie at least 1000 km southeast in the humid lowlands of Mexico. Archaeologi...
Chapter
Full-text available
This chapter explores the possible role of climate in the decline of Titriş Höyük, a regionally-important independent Early Bronze Age city state in the Lower Turkish Euphrates Valley, using data from a stable carbon and oxygen isotope analysis of 18 archaeological samples of human bone from the site.
Article
Full-text available
This paper provides new information about the social structure of the Late Classic (AD 600-800) Maya by using stable isotope analysis to analyze dietary practices and migration histories of 22 elite individuals from three residential compounds at the archaeological site of Chinikiha in Chiapas, Mexico. The research assess whether intra-elite social...
Article
Full-text available
This special issue of the Journal of Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences provides a broad overview of the foods and foodways at a premier example of urbanism in the pre-Hispanic New World, the ancient metropolis of Teotihuacan, Mexico. One of the grand challenges of reconstructing ancient urban foodways is determining the social, economic,...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeological research at the UNESCO World Heritage site of Teotihuacan (ad 1–ad 550) in the Basin of Mexico provides evidence for leporid (cottontails and jackrabbits) breeding and/or management within a residential complex of the city, Oztoyahualco. The present study tests this notion by analyzing Teotihuacan leporid bone collagen samples (n = 1...
Article
Full-text available
Interregional encounters frequently result in dietary, health, and cultural changes for participating groups. This paper investigates the patterns and pathways of dietary change among the Mulia Dani of highland western New Guinea, who at the time of data collection had been in contact with Christian missionaries and the global food market for 29 ye...
Article
A popular model for social evolution in the Santa Barbara Channel region holds that, during times of resource stress, islanders would trade with mainlanders for plant foods in order to supplement island diets. Recently, western sea-purslane ( Sesuvium verrucosum ) has been suggested as a primary food product involved in this exchange. This report p...
Data
Provenience information, stable isotope results, and FTIR-ATR data for each archaeological specimen in the study. Data points highlighted in grey were excluded from analyses due to possible diagenesis or analytical error. (XLSX)
Data
Stable isotope data and contextual information for modern leporid specimens. Stable carbon isotope values have been corrected for the industrial (Suess) effect as detailed in the text. (XLSX)
Article
Full-text available
Diet influences the stable isotope ratios of carbon and nitrogen (δ(13) C and δ(15) N values) in animal tissue; but here we explore the influences of particular aspects of the local environment on those values in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). In this article we present new δ(13) C and δ(15) N values in Gombe chimpanzees using hairs collected from...
Article
Full-text available
From Roman gladiatorial combat to Egyptian animal mummies, the capture and manipulation of carnivores was instrumental in helping to shape social hierarchies throughout the ancient world. This paper investigates the historical inflection point when humans began to control animals not only as alimental resources but as ritual symbols and social acto...
Article
Full-text available
Gender and other facets of social identity play important roles in the organization of complex societies. This study reconstructs dietary practices within the Middle Horizon (AD 500-1000) Tiwanaku colonies in southern Peru to increase our knowledge of gendered patterns of consumption within this early expansive state. We use stable isotope analysis...
Article
Paleomobility has been a key element in the study of the expansion of ancient states and empires, including the Tiwanaku polity of the South Central Andes (AD 500–1000). We present radiogenic strontium and oxygen isotope data from human burials from three cemeteries in the Tiwanaku-affiliated Middle Horizon archaeological site complex of Rio Muerto...
Article
a b s t r a c t The pre-Hispanic settlement of Paquimé (ca. 1200–1450 AD) lay outside of urban Mesoamerica in arid northern Chihuahua, Mexico, yet the excavated remains of 322 scarlet macaws, tropical parrots whose northernmost habitat is 500 km to the south, suggest that Paquimé had relationships with distant com-munities. Here, carbon and oxygen...

Projects

Project (1)
Project
This is an interdisciplinary project aimed to understand the life in Teotihuacan apartment compounds, particularly in Oztoyahualco 15B:N6W3, where three households dwelt.